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MOFA appreciates broad international support as Taiwan takes diverse approaches in bid for UN participation

  • Date:2021-09-28
  • Data Source:Department of International Organizations

September 28, 2021
No. 184

During the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) held this year, the government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) continued to take innovative and diverse approaches in seeking broader attention and support from the international community for its UN bid. It effectively raised awareness of the strong determination and profound aspiration of Taiwan’s 23.5 million people to participate in the UN system, steadily increasing the momentum for international support for Taiwan. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) expresses sincere gratitude for the extensive international support for Taiwan’s appeal for UN participation as well as the global recognition of its indispensable and constructive role in postpandemic recovery and realization of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

This year, all 14 of Taiwan’s diplomatic allies that are UN Member States either jointly or individually wrote to UN Secretary-General António Guterres, calling attention to Taiwan’s timely humanitarian assistance to other countries in the wake of COVID-19 outbreaks worldwide and acclaiming Taiwan as a constructive and responsible global partner in fulfilling the SDGs. However, the UN continues to exclude Taiwan from the UN system by citing an erroneous interpretation of UNGA Resolution 2758, unjustifiably denying Taiwan passport holders and journalists access to UN premises for tours or for attending or covering meetings and activities. Everyone’s voice, including that of Taiwan, should be heard. The UN Secretary-General should include Taiwan in the UN system and ensure its right to participate in an equal and dignified manner in meetings, mechanisms, and activities related to the implementation of the SDGs. Taiwan’s diplomatic allies made a strong argument that the Taiwanese people should not be left behind and that Taiwan’s contributions should not be ignored.

During the UN General Debate from September 21 to 27, 13 high-level officials from Taiwan’s diplomatic allies spoke up for Taiwan and urged the UN to uphold the spirit of “we the peoples” as espoused in the UN Charter. These were the Presidents of Palau, Guatemala, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, and Paraguay; the Prime Ministers of Belize, Saint Christopher and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Eswatini, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Haiti, and Tuvalu; and the Foreign Minister of Nicaragua (listed in the order in which they spoke). They stated that the 23.5 million people of Taiwan should not be excluded from the UN system based on the erroneous interpretation of UNGA Resolution 2758 and that Taiwan has the right to make valuable contributions to bolstering collective UN endeavors in postpandemic recovery and the implementation of the SDGs.

Meanwhile, like-minded nations have also extended strong and continuous support for Taiwan at various events in diverse ways. A joint statement issued as part of the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations stressed the importance of backing Taiwan’s meaningful participation in international organizations.  On the eve of the UNGA, the US Department of State expressed support for Taiwan’s meaningful participation in the UN, stating that its inclusion would benefit the world. Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga also spoke up in support of Taiwan during the UN General Debate. Former Vice President Chen Chien-jen was invited to participate in the virtual Global COVID-19 Summit convened by US President Joe Biden during the UNGA. Ambassador Elisabeth Millard, Senior Advisor of the US Mission to the UN, attended a side event on humanitarian assistance for Syrian refugees hosted by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) in New York. The Australian Office in Taipei, the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association, and the American Institute in Taiwan posted messages on their official social media accounts sharing a short film, To Freedom, produced by MOFA for its UN campaign, recognizing Taiwan as an important global partner in safeguarding the core values of freedom, democracy, human rights, and the rule of law, as well as in realizing the SDGs. In addition, Taiwan, the United States, and Japan are jointly organizing a seminar under the Global Cooperation and Training Framework on September 29. 

Members of Parliament of 13 countries—namely, Argentina, Canada, Chile, Eswatini, Ireland, Italy, Peru, Russia, South Africa, Sweden, Uruguay, the United Kingdom, and the US—endorsed Taiwan’s UN bid through parliamentary motions, joint statements, letters to the UN Secretary-General or to the Foreign Minister or Permanent Representative to the UN of their respective countries, letters to the editor cosigned by Taiwan’s representatives to their respective countries, and messages on social media.

Taiwan’s UN campaign has garnered growing attention this year via international outreach and new media. Minister of Foreign Affairs Jaushieh Joseph Wu wrote an op-ed urging the UN not to continuously cite the erroneous interpretation of UNGA Resolution 2758 under pressure from China, and instead welcome Taiwan into its fold so as to create a more resilient UN system. The op-ed was published at least 226 times by prominent media outlets in the US, Japan, the UK, France, Canada, Switzerland, Denmark, the Republic of Korea, and India, among other countries. To Freedom, the short film echoing this year’s UNGA theme on respecting people’s rights, was also well received, gaining 11.89 million views online. Taiwan’s large-scale video billboard at New York City’s landmark Times Square, featuring images of rising sky lanterns, attracted worldwide attention, fostering greater international understanding and support for Taiwan’s aspiration to participate in the UN.

A special landing page,, was also created as part of this year’s campaign, with people being invited to write a message of support for Taiwan’s participation in the UN system on virtual lanterns. In response, nearly 4,500 prominent political figures, parliamentarians, and private citizens from 75 countries stood up for Taiwan. This surge of international support shows that Taiwan’s image as a global force for good has become firmly embedded in the hearts of people worldwide.

In coordination with Taiwan’s UN campaign, TECO in New York held seven side events during the UNGA. These focused on the UN’s priority issues of international humanitarianism and sustainable development and demonstrated Taiwan’s concrete contributions and accomplishments to all sectors of society and the UN community. The activities were attended by Ambassador Inga Rhonda King, Permanent Representative of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines to the UN; Tina Eonemto Stege, Climate Envoy for the Marshall Islands; Craig Hart, Deputy Assistant Administrator for East Asia and the Pacific, US Agency for International Development; Lida Fitts, Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Investment, Energy, and Infrastructure, US Department of the Treasury; Ambassador Paul Beresford-Hill, Permanent Observer of the Mission of the Sovereign Order of Malta to the UN; and representatives of related think tanks. They took part in dialogues with Timothy T. Y. Hsiang, Secretary General of the Taiwan International Cooperation and Development Fund, and Dr. Chiu Chen-yu, Founding Director of the Taiwan-Reyhanli Centre for World Citizens. Officials of UN missions of diplomatic allies and like-minded nations, members of the UN community, and US scholars and experts also joined in the activities either virtually or in person, highlighting the fact that Taiwan is both willing and able to provide assistance in advancing key items on the UN agenda for enhancing the well-being of humankind. 

Domestic groups advocating for Taiwan’s international participation and overseas compatriot communities have been inventive in organizing activities that have lent support to Taiwan’s cause during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. They held press conferences, issued joint statements, sent letters to the UN Secretary-General, distributed antipandemic kits, published advertisements, hosted outdoor activities, and employed other avenues to increase the magnitude of support for Taiwan. They joined in concerted efforts with the government to convey to the international community Taiwan’s aspiration to be accepted by the UN as soon as possible. Think tanks from the US, Canada, and other countries held seminars endorsing Taiwan’s international participation, discussed Taiwan’s incorporation into global cooperation frameworks, and affirmed that expanding Taiwan’s meaningful participation in international organizations is a vital link in the strengthening of multilateral governance. 

MOFA once again sincerely thanks diplomatic allies and like-minded countries for continuing to extend staunch support, both vocally and through concrete friendly measures, for Taiwan’s participation in the UN system. Taiwan will further promote its UN campaign in a professional, pragmatic, and constructive manner, steadfastly fulfill its international obligations, and collaborate with countries worldwide to pave the way for a stronger postpandemic recovery and sustainable development. Taiwan’s determination and the pace of its progress toward participating in the UN system have grown even stronger and steadier thanks to the support of all sectors of Taiwanese society and the international community. (E)